Hereford United 1 Forest Green 2
HEREFORD UNITED 1 FOREST GREEN ROVERS 2
SECOND placed Forest Green made it back-to-back away wins in the Blue Square Bet Premier with a measured display at Edgar Street.
Behind inside seven minutes to Stefan Stam's strike, Rovers hit back in a frantic first half to lead through Ben Wright and Yan Klukowski.
It was the latter's fourth goal in as many starts this term, justifying his recall at the expense of Kieron Forbes in the only change to Dave Hockaday's line-up.
Both sides could have scored from their first attacks of the night, Ryan Bowman chancing his arm on 13 seconds for the hosts with a 20-yard shot that skidded across the turf and was gathered at the second attempt by Sam Russell.
Barely a minute later Rovers skipper Eddie Oshodi found himself on the end of Ben Wright's inswinging free-kick, but his firm header was pushed away by former team-mate James Bittner in the Hereford goal.
The opening goal was a horror show from a visiting perspective, as a deep corner was allowed to travel all the way to the far post and Stam crashed home.
There was at least a quick response, and Bittner had to react sharply again to keep out a near-post drive from Magno Vieira.
Eight minutes later it was all-square, and this time Bittner was totally helpless as Wright curled a glorious free-kick over the wall and into the far corner of the net – his third goal of the season.
Wet conditions, coupled with a spiky derby atmosphere, meant the quality of football on show was several notches lower than at Macclesfield three days earlier.
But Rovers grew in stature as the first half progressed, and they got their noses in front in the 32nd minute when Jamie Collins dug out a cross from the left and Klukowski's diving header bobbled in.
The interval came at a bad time for Hockaday's side, who by now were monopolising possession and looking by far the likelier scorers.
But there was another headache for Hereford at the start of the second period, with Reece Styche entering the fray from the bench in place of Vieira.
It resulted in the rare sight of Styche and Matty Taylor on the pitch together, the latter taking up a position wide on the left, and somehow the balance of the team did not look quite right.
That said, Hereford continued to look disjointed themselves and were restricted to long-range efforts from Marley Watkins and Marlon Jackson that were blocked by a defiant green rearguard.
Rovers thought they had sealed the spoils with five minutes left when Wright's free-kick was bundled past Bittner by a combination of Oshodi and Styche, only for an offside flag to curtail their celebrations.
Hereford United: J. Bittner; A. Gallinagh, L. Graham, S. Stam, C. Carruthers; M. Watkins, H. Pell, A. Sammons (J. O'Keefe 65), S. Clucas; M. Jackson, R. Bowman; Subs not used: J. Heath, S. Canham, J. McQuilkin, B. Smikle.
Forest Green: S. Russell; E. Asafu-Adjaye, J. Turley, E. Oshodi, C. Stokes; Y. Klukoswski (K. Forbes 77), A. Bangura, J. Collins; M. Vieira (R. Styche 46), M. Taylor, B. Wright (S. Brogan 90); Subs not used: O. Koroma, P. Marsh.
Referee: M. Bull (Essex)
Star man: Jamie Turley